The worst kept secret in Detroit is no longer. Matthew Moroun officially announced today that Michigan Central Station had been sold to the Ford Motor Company and will be the center piece for a new urban campus for the company.
From the Detroit News article:
Ford Motor Co. envisions renovating the historic 18-story, 500,000-square-foot building to anchor a new Corktown campus. It gives the automaker a hub near downtown, would add hundreds of employees to the neighborhood, and resurrects one of the largest symbols of Detroit’s fall from glory.
It’s an ambitious plan with no recent precedent. The building has sat empty for 30 years and is derelict. And the automotive technologies that Ford intends to test and develop has yet to find a market with consumers around the world.
Details are sparse. Executive Chairman Bill Ford Jr. and Ford leadership will talk about their plans for the blighted building June 19. Part of that event, billed as a celebration, will be open to the public.
Matthew Moroun, heir to his father’s transportation and logistics businesses, said at a Monday press conference in front of the structure his family acquired in 1992 that Ford is now the outright owner of the building and the adjacent book depository.
“The future of the depot is assured,” Moroun said. “The Ford Motor Co.’s Blue Oval will adorn the building.”
Ford spokesman Said Deep, who watched the announcement from behind a scrum of media, said, “This is an exciting time for the city and an exciting time for Ford. We look forward to sharing our plans for Michigan Central Station and for Corktown.”
Multiple sources have said the train station and the adjacent book depository building that was part of the purchase will be key parts of Ford’s goal to create a campus in Detroit. Ford has been amassing properties in Corktown to form a hub for its self-driving and electric vehicle divisions.
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